Buying first flatbed trailer

Discussion in 'Ask An Owner Operator' started by truckerbangin, Mar 19, 2023.

  1. truckerbangin

    truckerbangin Light Load Member

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    Looking to buy my first 48ft aluminum deck steel frame spread axel flatbedtrailer. What should I be looking out for as a problems or potential major failures to look out for before purchasing. Any help from fellow owner/operators would be appreciated.
     
    Diesel Dave Thanks this.
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  3. Diesel Dave

    Diesel Dave Last Few of the OUTLAWS

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    Surprised you didn’t use the search icon on the top right since your a veteran on here on TTR.
     
    ducnut and Siinman Thank this.
  4. truckerbangin

    truckerbangin Light Load Member

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    I get lazy and just make a post
     
    Bean Jr., Siinman and Diesel Dave Thank this.
  5. Spyro2112

    Spyro2112 Medium Load Member

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    Cracked frame, axles, breaks, tires bearings. Air tank , bags, electrical, abs, break chambers, deck, air leaks kingpin, king pin measurement, lights, rub rail, weight rate, d o t bumper, 7 way plug, glad hands, slack adjusters, dolly, zerts, wheel seal, break pads, drums, leveler
     
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  6. ducnut

    ducnut Road Train Member

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    Don’t buy a combo trailer. They pull like garbage and fall apart. Because it’s two different materials, they can’t be welded into a 1-piece structure. Therefore, they flex, hammock, and twist, which causes them to start loosening up. The vibration/resonance through the trailer causes them to rattle to pieces. The deck screws will break and the deck will start popping. Literally, they will fall apart, as you drive down the road. They’re a horrible place to spend your money. Buy something like an all-aluminum MAC and have a trailer that’ll last you many years, if properly cared for. There’s a reason the serious steel haulers buy MAC.

    Do a basic search for “MAC” and the more recent flatbed advice threads will pop up.

    Also, spend the money and get between-the-spread tarp boxes, plenty of winches on both sides, plenty of J-Plates, and dunnage racks/boxes. Buy it once, buy it nice.
     
    Cat sdp, Concorde and Bean Jr. Thank this.
  7. Spyro2112

    Spyro2112 Medium Load Member

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    Bull #### I have one 2012 bought it in 18 nothing wrong with it
     
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  8. Long FLD

    Long FLD Road Train Member

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    All I pulled for 10 years were combo Western flats. In that time I pulled 3 different trailers, all quads. I never had any problems with them popping deck screws out or falling apart going down the road.

    Hauling coils and such could be a different story, but generalizing all combo trailers as junk is false.
     
    Oxbow, D.Tibbitt and kwswan Thank this.
  9. FreightyAK

    FreightyAK Bobtail Member

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    You might find that combo trailers have a lot of rivets holding the deck rails together. Make sure they are not broken. Especially at the front corners.
     
  10. fortycalglock

    fortycalglock Road Train Member

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    I’d buy new personally. You get new everything, and they hold their value. Thanks to inflation, my Doonan step is only worth a few grand less than what I paid for it in 2015. Between the spread is the worst place to put boxes. They really get beat up back there, plus if you blow a tire you have great odds of destroying your box. I’ve owned a few combos and never had any issues of them falling apart. It’s really hard to beat the deck and rail structure of the Fontaine Infinity (I have 2 53’ flats). Make sure it has tire inflation, that feature will more than pay for itself in road service, tire wear, and down time.
     
  11. bonder45

    bonder45 Road Train Member

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    I’ve had a $5000 48’ combo bought off Richie brothers running 70% oilfield and 30% OTR and she’s held up quite nice ( Transcraft )

    I’ve done normal maintenance but nothing crazy.
     
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